Georgia is one of the most dangerous states in the United States for pedestrians. In the first half of 2018, 133 pedestrians were killed after being hit by a car. This put Georgia fourth behind California, Florida, and Texas in pedestrian traffic fatalities. According to the Governor’s Highway Safety Report, 2018 was projected to have the highest number of pedestrian fatalities in the country since 1990.
Naturally, these statistics are concerning. More and more people go to work on foot or walk for recreation and exercise. Even if you drive a car, you become a pedestrian as soon as you step out of the vehicle. If you get hit by a car, you deserve to get compensation from the driver if they were negligent. Since most insurance companies don’t pay up unless they absolutely have to, it’s usually best to hire an attorney.
Causes of Pedestrian Accidents According to An Atlanta Car Wreck Attorney
As with any other type of collision, accidents involving pedestrians can have many causes. Often, they are due to distracted or reckless driving. Motorists don’t always look for pedestrians as they make their way around the city, even when they are approaching crosswalks. Instead, they talk on their phones, speed, or disobey traffic signals. They may also drive while intoxicated. Any of these risky behaviors can result in serious injuries for a pedestrian.
That doesn’t mean that pedestrians aren’t at fault sometimes. Many people walk and text or listen to loud music which prevents them from hearing horns or sirens. Walkers are also known to cross the street without looking both ways or dart out into traffic unexpectedly.
Since Georgia follows a contributory negligence system, your role in the accident can affect the amount you are awarded in damages. Under the modified contributory negligence rule, your compensation will be reduced by the degree to which you were at fault. If it is determined that you were ten percent at fault, your award would be reduced by ten percent. However, if your negligence contributed 50 percent or more to the accident, you won’t be able to recover damages.
Benefits of Hiring an Atlanta Car Crash Attorney
Given the above, you need to contact a car accident attorney if a driver hit you. The motorist will do everything they can to show that you were at fault. If you want to get the compensation you deserve, you need to have a competent attorney on your side. Lawyers can help with every aspect of your case. Your attorney will:
- Take charge of the accident investigation. In some traffic accidents, it’s clear who was at fault. The driver may even admit that they were speeding or that they failed to stop a red light. This isn’t always the case, though. Drivers can even dispute what’s in the police report. Sometimes attorneys need to launch their own investigation to figure out exactly what happened. You attorney can hire experts to assist with this.
- Calculate your damages and fight for a fair settlement. You may not be aware of all the losses for which you can get compensation. You probably know that you can be reimbursed for your medical bills. However, you may not be aware that you can file a claim for loss of future earning capacity. You can also recover non-economic damages like pain and suffering. You attorney will look at your losses in their entirety and calculate how much would be fair compensation. They will then negotiate with the driver’s insurance company or take the matter to court if necessary.
- Advise you on how to avoid jeopardizing your case. The legal process can be difficult to understand. Your attorney will explain the laws which govern your case and ensure everything is done within the statute of limitations. They will also caution you about speaking to insurance adjusters or posting about the accident on social media.
Contact a Georgia Car Accident Lawyer at The Bethune Law Firm
If you want to make a strong case for compensation after being hit by a car, reach out to the attorneys at our firm. We know Georgia’s traffic laws and we have several years of experience in negotiating with insurance companies. We also have trial experience so if we need to take your case to court, we’ll do so. If you’re ready to fight for your rights, contact us to schedule a free consultation. We work on a contingency basis, so you don’t pay us anything until we secure damages on your behalf. Call Bethune Law Firm today and let us get started on your case!